Classic Review of the Southern Gothic Novel of Wise Blood by Flannery O’Connor

Arts & Culture

Foggy, lazy summer days seemed like the perfect time to read a classic, and being a 6-year-old Southern belle led me to read Flannery O’Connor’s Wise Blood from 1952. O’Connor shaped this novel based on four previously published short stories. which takes a sardonic look at the inhumanity of war, the hypocrisy of religion, and the inability of humans to connect.

O’Connor, tragically, only lived to be 39 due to lupus, and although his name was familiar to me, due to the restrictive nature of my academic concentration in British Literature and the 30-year teaching career that followed, where reading outside was not possible, I would never have read. Wow, I missed something!

Wise Blood was provocative, deep and captivating. Depressing as all come out, but the truths of life dispensed in southern gothic style had an impact. Try reading page 150 and don’t think about the shattered lives of any suicide or mass murderer. Some lives have been shattered beyond repair.

Not for the faint of heart, but worth reading. A true classic!

Wise Blood is currently available at BookStore1 Sarasota 117 S. Pineapple Ave. Sarasota, FL 34236 or on their online store at www.sarasotabooks.com. Originally published in 1952 ISBN: 9780374530631.

Irene B. Bowles